california pesto chicken burger_350

Barbeque season is in full swing and I love cooking up a great tasting burger.  In recent years we’re being warned about ingesting excess beef, so my “go to” burger is a lean chicken patty. The great flavour of this burger comes from the secret ingredient – pesto – which is added right to the meat. I like to make my own pesto when basil is in season and freeze it in small containers for use all year.  Visit www.rosereisman.com for pesto recipes.  You can buy store-bought, but keep in mind that they tend to have excess oil added, making them much higher in calories and fat. The toppings of cheeses, avocado and tomatoes make this dish a “home run.” Just to compare, a ground 4 oz beef burger will have close to double the calories and fat than a ground white chicken burger.

INGREDIENTS
1 lb ground white and dark ground chicken
1 egg
1⁄3 cup seasoned dry breadcrumbs
2 Tbsp pesto sauce
2 tsp crushed garlic
3 Tbsp minced green onions
pinch salt and pepper
4 thin slices
Monterey Jack or aged cheddar cheese
1/4 cup diced avocado
4 slices ripe tomatoes
8 basil leaves (optional)
INSTRUCTIONS
1. Combine the chicken, egg, breadcrumbs, pesto, garlic, green onions, and salt and pepper. Form into 4 burgers. Either grill or bake at 425°F until no longer pink, about 8 minutes per side, or until internal temperature reaches 165 F. Add the cheese and cook just until melted.

2. Garnish with avocado, tomatoes and basil leaves.
NOTES
Serves: 4

Cook Time: 16 minutes

Nutritional Information per Serving
Calories 304
Protein 23.7g
Total Fat 20.8g
Saturated Fat 7.6g
Carbohydrates 3.5g
Cholesterol 100mg
Fibre 0.6g
Sodium 361mg